Makayla Hammons (2022)

I am Makayla Hammons, and I recently graduated from Cristo Rey Oklahoma City Catholic High School. Throughout my time I was involved in numerous leadership programs within my community [Youth Leadership Academy, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation Teen Board, Pivot Teen Board, Youth Council: Co-Representative of Ward 7, Cashing Out College (Founder), and the Oklahoma Hall of Fame Teen Board], and I am the founder of three organizations within my school [Black Student Union, Royals4Life, Scrub Club], and one outside of school [Cashing Out College]. Additionally, I have participated in various genres of dance [Ballet (Lead Dancer), pointe, tap, jazz, hip-hop, African, lyrical, baile folklorico, and company (Soloist and Lead Dancer)], and many sports [Basketball (Varsity and Captain), track and field (Club), cross country (Club and Varsity), volleyball (Varsity), soccer (Varsity), and golf (Club)].

“You should go into the medical field,” a phrase I got tired of hearing over and over again. For twelve years I dreamed of becoming a secret service agent. The thrill of putting myself in the line of danger to protect someone else, and keeping secrets always seemed to interest me. I just knew a secret service agent was what I wanted to be when I grew up, and “nothing” was going to change my mind, until the summer before the freshman year of high school when I had the opportunity to participate in a medical camp held at OU – Aspiring Health Professions. It was a draw-dropping experience. I had the chance to learn how to suture, insert saline through bone marrow, inflate a person’s lungs, and I got Stop the Bleed certified. But, what made me really realize that I wanted to go into the medical field was when I got to apply all that I had learned throughout the week to work on a cadaver. That was a game changer, the thrill that ran through my body as I had to react under pressure, communicate with my peers, and remain calm all excited me. I knew I wanted to go into the medical field, but I had not figured out what I wanted to do. I knew I worked really well during stressful moments, I didn’t want to go into work knowing what I would be doing that day, and I knew I wanted to do something within surgery. So, I decided I wanted to pursue a career as a trauma surgeon. However, I knew I wanted to continue to work with children, so I decided I want to become a pediatric trauma surgeon.

I am currently a freshman at THEE North Carolina A&T State University, where I will be furthering my education majoring in biomedical engineering (pre-med) in pursuit of achieving some of my biggest goals. The MES program is definitely one for the books. With me going into this program fresh out of high school I knew I would be the underdog in a sense, and with me knowing this I knew I had not only met, but exceeded expectations. This program set me up with skills I can utilize both in my career and in life in general. Being able to participate in a high level skilled research project was intriguing to me. I left with a greater understanding of the importance of communication, time management, prioritizing, and problem solving.


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